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Conversations, thoughts, and insights

The Modern Resume: What Should Stay & What To Omit

By Michelle Joseph Dec 03, 2014

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In short, a resume is a one-page overview of your life. However creative you may get with fonts and colors, one thing stands constant; the content is of the utmost importance. As such, it is essential to put forth the most relevant and accurate information to attract a future employer. There are, however, many common and overused practices when it comes to building a resume that could turn your first impression into the last.

Objective Statement

Long a constant on the resume, the objective statement has run its course. By speaking only in generalities and telling the employer what you want, this sentence does not lend any substance to the resume. If the resume feels naked without it, then interchange it with a sentence specific to the why one will be successful position that is being applied for.

Contact Information and References

Personal data and references cannot take up too much space on the resume. Ensure that you have important contact information such as your name, e-mail, and phone number at the top of the page. References on the other hand should be on a separate page and only get sent if specifically asked for in the application or by the employer. If they want references, they will request them; there is no need for "References available upon request."

High School

There is no room for high school experience on a professional resume. The only time there might be an exception to this rule is if you attended a specific trade high school in the industry. Unless it holds this level of relevance, then it is simply a waste of space.

Specific College / University Information

Providing the name of the college or university that you graduated from along with the degree that was achieved is an important part of any resume. For those who graduated within the last five years, coursework related to the industry you are applying for can be helpful. After that, there is no need for further information, employers do not need your college's address or phone number. Any low GPA does not lend any benefit and should be omitted as well.

Irrelevant Job Experience

Any job experience that is listed should be relevant to the position that is being applied for. Experience from over a decade ago is no longer pertinent information for an application, as much will have changed since that time. Finally, unless a job was planned to be short term, ie. internship or event planning, then it should be left off the page as well.

Expert Hint: Have a master copy of all past jobs, skills, dates, etc., so when you are applying for a specific industry you can easily compile the relevant data.

Daily Duties

Descriptions of work experience should be an overview of tasks and duties during the duration of time there. Actually including descriptions of what happened on a daily basis is overkill and will turn a hiring employer off to reading that particular resume. Provide them with database systems that you are proficient in, a range of clients you coordinated with, etc., can showcase your ability to multitask and take on a sufficient workload.

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